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son Trial • National Sporting Library 




Bob Duncan 
Executive Director 



Across the state, we re- 
main focused on con- 
necting people with wildlife — 
through many different ven- 
ues. We conduct and closely 
follow surveys that offer in- 
sight about our customers and 
the services we provide. When 
hunters are asked about their 
sport and what impediments 
lead to decreased hunting ac- 
tivity, the resounding answer is 
"access." Whether it be less access tu pub- 
lic land, or ownership changes that take 
private land out of the hunting mix, or a 
feeling of hunters being too crowded on 
the land they hunt, the theme of dimin- 
ished access is clearly heard. 

Over the past five years, we have made 
significant progress toward improving 
hunting opportunities, through the acqui- 
sition of 13 land parcels that represent an 
additional 14,000 acres. The cost of doing 
so was paid for by federal grants, by conser- 
vation partners, by state bonds, and of 
course, by all who purchase hunting li- 
censes in Virginia. These purchases bring 
the total amount of Department-managed 
property to nearly 200,000 acres, continu- 
ing our status as the number one holder of 
state land in Virginia. I believe these acqui- 
sitions underscore our resolve to provide 
you with high-quality outdoor experi- 
ences. 

We have also partnered with land 
management agencies and corporate land 
owners to create mutually beneficial hunt- 
ing experiences on their properties. David 




Hart's feature (p. 10) about re- 
claiming surface mines for 
wildlife habitat speaks to the 
PALS — or Public Access 
Lands for Sportsmen—initia- 
tive that has opened up thou- 
sands of private acres to 
hunters. 

Improving opportunities 
for anglers via expanded ca- 
pacity is another way we sup- 
port you. Since 2005, renova- 
liuns to the Coursey Springs and King & 
Queen hatcheries, 15 public boat land- 
ings, and Laurel Bed Lake dam, as well as 
stocking programs to boost trout fishing, 
are prime examples. And a newly signed 
agreement with Tennessee that allows Vir- 
ginia anglers to access enhanced fisheries 
in the South Holston Reservoir under a 
special fishing license is yet another meas- 
ure of how we value quality recreation. 

Of course these initiatives don't 
occur overnight. And, they aren't cheap. 
We know from tracking the consumer 
price index that the same amount of 
money buys much less today than it did 
five years ago. Purchasing power has, in- 
deed, taken a hit. But the examples here 
demonstrate our commitment to you and 
should remind us all that we are working 
on your behalf. This is your wildlife 
agency. We continue to look down the 
road, to invest in your future. We never 
lose sight of your support, and we take 
very seriously the responsibility to stew- 
ard your wildlife resources and spend your 
money wisely. 



Mission Statement 

To manage Virginia's wildlife and inland fish to maintain optimum populations of all species to serve the needs of the Commonwealth: 
To provide opportunity for all to enjoy wildlife, inland fish, boating and related outdoor recreation and to work diligently to safeguard 
the rights of the people to hunt, fish and harvest game as provided for in the Constitution of Virginia; To promote safety for persons and 
property in connection with boating, hunting and fishing; To provide educational outreach programs and materials that foster an aware- 
ness of and appreciation for Virginia's fish and wildlife resources, their habitats, and hunting, fishing, and boating opportunities. 



Dedicated to t/ie Conservation of Virginia 's Wildlife and Natural Resources 



Commonwealth of Virginia 

Bob McDonnell, Governor 

HUNTING & FISHING 

LICENSE FEES 

Subsidized this publication 

Secretary of Natural Resources 

Douglas W. Domenech 

Department of Game and 
Inland Fisheries 

Bob Duncan 
Executive Director 

Members of the Board 

Ward Burton, Halifax 
Brent Clarke, Fairfax 
Sherry Smith Crumley, Buchanan 
James W. Hazel, Oakton 
Randy J. Kozuch, Alexandria 
John W. Montgomery, Jr., Sandston 
Mary Louisa Pollard, Irvington 
F. Scott Reed, Jr., Manakin-Sabot 
Charles S. Yates, Cleveland 



Magazine Staff 

Sally Mills, Editor 

Lee Walker, Ron Messina, Julia Dixon, 

Contributing Editors 
Emily Pels, Art Director 
Carol Kushlak, Production Manager 
Tom Guess, Staff Contributor 



Color separations and printing by 
Progress Printing, Lynchburg, VA. 



Virginia Wildlife (ISSN 0042 6792) is published 
monthly by the Virginia Department of Game and 
Inland Fisheries. Send all subscription orders and 
address changes to Virginia Wildlife, P. O. Box 7477, 
Red Oak, Iowa 51591-0477. Address all other com- 
munications concerning this publication to Virginia 
Wildlife, P. O. Box 11104, 4010 West Broad Street, 
Richmond, Virginia 23230-1104. Subscription rates 
are $12.95 for one year, $23.95 for two years; $4.0C 
per each back issue, subject to availability'. Out-of- 
country rate is $24.95 for one year and must be paid 
in U.S. funds. No refunds for amounts less than 
$5.00. To subscribe, call toll-free (800) 710-9369. 
POSTMASTER: Please send all address changes tc 
Virginia Wildlife, PO. Box 7477, Red Oak, Iowa 
51591-0477. Postage for periodicals paid at 
Richmond, Virginia and additional entr\' offices. 

Copyright 2010 by the Virginia Department ol 
Game and Inland Fisheries. All rights reserved. 

The Department of Game and Inland Fisheries shall 
afford to all persons an equal access to Department 
programs and facilities without regard to race, 
color, religion, national origin, disability, sex, oi 
age. If you believe that you liave been discriminat- 
ed against in any program, activity or facility, 
please write to; Virginia Department of Game and 
Inland Fisheries, ATTN: Compliance Officer, (40ir 
West Broad Street.) P O. Box 11104, Richmond, 
Virginia 23230-1104. I 

"This publication is intended for general informa- 1 
tional purposes only and every effort has been i 
made to ensure its accuracy. The information con i 
tained herein does not serve as a legal representa- 1 
tion of fish and wildlife laws or regulations. The j 
Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries 1 
does not assume responsibility for any change in| 
dates, regulations, or information that may occur | 
after publication." 



VOLUME 71 



NUMBER 9 



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About the cover: 
The German shorthair pointer is 
a dog bred to find upland game 
birds such as quail, grouse, and 
pheasant. It is one of many breeds 
involved in dog trials across the 
country. See related story on 
page 4. ©DwightDyke 




Magazine 
Subscriptions 

For subscriptions, 

circulation problems 

and address changes 

call: 

1-800-710-9369 

12 issues for $12.95 
24 issues for $23.95 





Dogs on Trial 

by Clarke C. Jones 
Get out and investigate the world 
of dog trials. Both you and your 
dog will benefit. 

Mining for Wildlife 

by David Hart 
In the aftermath of coal extraction, 
land managers focus their atten- 
tion on restoring habitat. 




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A Tribute to Our 
Sporting Heritage 

by Beth Hester 
Middleburg houses an exceptional library 
devoted to chronicling our sporting history. 

Western Branch's 
Angling Bounty 

by Marc N. McGlade 
Open year-round, this Suffolk lake is sure 
to please. 

Come to the Fair 

by Gail Brown 
A Ferris wheel, corn dogs, games, and a 
sampling of Virginia's colorful reptiles await you. 

David's First Deer 

by Bruce Ingram 
Hunters mentoring adults new to the sport can 
offer much more than shooting instruction. 



lELD AND Afloat 



Journal 
Off the Leash 
Photo Tips 
On the Water 
Dining In 





story by Clarke C.Jones 
photos by Dwight Dyke 



L 



eave it to a southerner to 
help create one of the oldest 
dog trials in the United 
States.' W.W. (Uncle Billy) Titus of 
West Point, Mississippi, along with 
Edward Dexter, who owned what 
would become the famous Char- 
lottesville Field Trial Kennels, pro- 
moted and lobbied for a national 
championship that would recognize 
the best bird dog in the country. In 
1896, the first National Champi- 
onship — a field trial for pointers and 
setters — was won by a setter. Count 
Gladstone IV. That championship 
has run almost without exception 
since and is considered at least 
among bird dog owners as, "the most 
prestigious event of its kind, the field 
trial equivalent of the Kentucky 
Derby" 



Despite the decline in quail and 
waterfowl hunting, dog trials still 
exist and have even expanded into 
non-hunting events. According to 
Todd Kellam with the U. S. Kennel 
Club, there are two reasons dog 
events are important: "First, and 
foremost, it gives people something 
to get out and do with their dog. It is 
fun for the owners and great for the 
dogs. Secondly, I think that by offer- 
ing dog events, better dogs get bred 
from generation to generation. 
Many dog events are competitive 
and dogs earn championship titles 
based on head-to-head competition. 
Yet others [events] are not competi- 
tive in that they have performance 
standards that dogs need to meet in 
order to earn championships. In 
both cases, dogs that earn titles, de- 
grees, and championships are the 
best of the best. These events give us 




Jeff Winall (on horse) helped judge this bird 
dog trial. Setter Chipoakes Joe is shown 
here with his owner, Waverly Coleman. 
Below, mennbers of the Tidewater Retriever 
Club prepare a Lab for an upcoming trial. 





a measuring stick as to how well our 
dogs perform in their individual 
areas of expertise." 

BIRD DOG TRIALS 

It is believed that the first bird dog tri- 
als held in the United States were to 
initiate in some formal way what 
would be considered the best bird 
dog in the country by having bird 
dogs follow a course over a pre- 
scribed number of acres and see 
which one found the most birds, to 
put it simply. A dog's "style" and 
"drive" were also considered. The 
Llewellin setter was the more popu- 
lar breed, or maybe it was the more 
popular breed to those who organ- 
ized the first trials, so setters won 
those events. It wasn't until a decade 
or so later that pointers began to 
dominate tiials. Pointers proved to be 



faster and harder-going dogs, and 
once they started winning bird dog 
trials, it was rare to see a setter win 
over a pointer in the National Cham- 
pionship when they competed to- 
gether. 

There are numerous bird dog reg- 
istiants that sanction dog trials. Per- 
haps the best known are the Ameri- 
can Kennel Club (AKC), founded in 
1884, which registers approximately 
20,000 purebred dogs annually, and 
the United Kennel Club (UKC), es- 
tablished in 1898. The American Field 
Stud Book registers pointers and set- 
ters. That book actually predates the 
American Kennel Club and provided 
the AKC a great deal of information 
which assisted in the club's forma- 
tion. The AKC used to register only 
purebred dogs and allow only pure- 
bred dogs in its tiials. 

However, according to Todd 



Lundgren with the AKC, in April 
2010 it opened its companion trials, 
which consist of rally trials, obedi- 
ence tiials, and agility tiials, to mixed 
breed dogs. The UKC registers pure- 
bred but also has what is known as a 
limited privilege program — where 
dogs other than purebred can com- 
pete. Each of these organizations has 
their own rules and regulations as to 
how a bird dog tiial is scored. Specific 
breed clubs also have their own field 
trials, where only that breed of dog 
may enter. 

Bird dog tiials showcase what a 
particular group of hunters or own- 
ers look for in a bird dog. Some want 
to see a dog staunch and steady while 
on point and test the dog's ability to 
honor another dog already on point. 

Below, this English setter is steady on 
point during a bird dog trial. 





been breeding, training, or trialing re- 
trievers since the middle 1980s. "We 
have run in AKC field trials, N AfiRA 
hunt tests, UKC hunt tests, and AKC 
hunt tests," said Ron. "We like the 
hunt test atmosphere in that it is 
geared toward hunters, and the non- 
competitive nature of the test makes 
a lot of friends because everyone 
wants each other to succeed. Field 
trials are much more technical and re- 
quire a lot of training time. Field trial 
dogs are great dogs and it just boils 
down to what appeals to you." 



Agility trials test a dog's ability to clear obstacles correctly and withoutfoult; 
in this case, a hoop. 




Members of the Deep Run Hunt Club exer- 
cise their hounds during the off-season. 



In some trials, a dog must not only 
point but retrieve shot game as well. 
In other such trials, the handler must 
walk and handle his dog. In still oth- 
ers, the dog owners and the gallery 
are all on horseback. Depending 
upon the type of trial, a dog may run 
a course in 10 to 25 minutes; in others, 
where endurance is a key element of 
a dog's standard, a dog may run up 
to 3 hours! 

RETRIEVER TRIAI^S 

The UKC and AKC are sanctioning 
registries that run retriever trials or 
tests. There is also an organization 
called N AHRA (for. North American 
Hunting Retriever Association), that 
holds tiials. Retriever field trials and 
retriever hunt tests may look similar. 



but they are different. A retriever 
field trial is often thought of as a com- 
petition between dogs, and hunt tests 
are where a retriever runs against a 
written standard. In a hunt test, dogs 
that meet the standard are awarded 
ribbons and points toward a title. In a 
field trial, dogs are awarded a place- 
ment such as first, second, or third 
and are awarded ribbons and points 
according to hozv they place. In a hunt 
test consisting of 40 retrievers, 30 
may qualify because they met the 
written standard. In a field trial, how- 
ever, perhaps only 3 dogs out of the 
40 performed well enough to place, 
and the rest of the entries may leave 
with no ribbons and no points. 

Ron and Marge Samuels of 
Amber Run Kennels in Amelia have 



COONHOUND 
TRIAES 

The United Kennel Club's coon- 
hound program licenses as many as 
4,500 coonhound night hunts annu- 
ally. You would think with that many 
people and hounds running around 
in the woods at night, someone 
would likely notice. Again, Todd Kel- 
1am pointed out, "The general public 
has no idea how popular the sport of 
competition coonhunting is in com- 
parison to other hunting dog trials. 
Collectively, among all the registries 
that offer hunting dog events, coon- 
hound events would add up to more 
than all the others combined." 

The object of this type of trial, like 
that of all dog trials, is to test the per- 



VIRGINIA WILDLIFE ♦ www.HuntFishVA.com 



formance of a dog's ability to do 
what it was bred to do. In this case it 
is to track and tree a raccoon. Ashby 
Nuckols, an active member of the 
Louisa Coonhunters Association, ex- 
plained it this way: "Each hound has 
its own individual cry and the owner 
of each hound knows his hound's 
particular bark. When a coon is 
tracked and a hound begins to 
'sound/ the owner lets a judge know 
that is his hound. The hound that 
trees the coon first is awarded 
points." Rarely if ever, is the coon 




Retriever trials can involve a hum .,__.. 
or a field trial. Right, setters wait their 
turn to trial. 

caught. As Ashby noted, "The object 
of these trials is to tree the coon. We 
do not want the coon harmed." 

West Virginian Tim Shanley, who 
participates in hunts in Virginia, 
added, "Coon hunts are no kill hunts. 
No gun is allowed on the premises. 
We do not want to see a raccoon in- 
jured or killed. The more raccoons 
there are, the better it helps our sport. 
These coon trials are all about mak- 
ing a dog a champion, not about 
harming the animal." 

Dr. Tom Carroll, a deer hunter 
and veterinarian noted, "Deer leave 
a very strong scent, so even a hound 
that is just adequate can usually fol- 
low a deer, but a coonhound has to 
have a very good sense of smell if it is 
going to be competitive. Most peo- 

SEPTEMBER 2010 



pie I know who own a coonhound 
take very, very good care of it." 

Annually, the coonhound season 
culminates in a final trial, and there is 
a triple crown of competitions. "It 
generates quite a bit of money to the 
town that hosts it, as attendance for 
the weekend may draw up to 40,000 
people," said Nuckols. 

AGmTYTRLUS 

A number of dog trials don't involve 
wild game, and agility trials are one 
of the more popular venues. As 
Laura Streng of the Central Virginia 
Agility Club described, "Just about 
every weekend you can find an agili- 
ty trial within 100 to 150 miles from a 
major city." At these trials you can see 
all breeds, shapes, and sizes of dogs 
that run through an obstacle course. 
A dog and its owner enter a ring set 
up with obstacles such as ramps, tun- 
nels, hurdles, hoops, and weaves. At 
a designated signal, the owner starts 
the dog through these obstacles that 
the dog must clear correctly and 
without a fault. Any faults are noted 
by the judge in the ring. In the "excel- 
lent" class, your dog qualifies by not 
committing an error. The time it takes 
your dog to go through the course 
also matters to some degree, but the 
object is to qualify by passing 



through each obstacle without a 
fault. It is a fast-paced challenge for 
both the owner and the dog. A quali- 
fication in a trial equals a "leg" and 
three legs equal a title. 

There are different classes of diffi- 
culty for dogs of different heights. 
Although border collies, shelties, and 
Australian shepherds are some of the 
more popular breeds that run in 
these trials, you will see every breed 
and size of dog compete. In AKC- 
sanctioned trials, the ultimate goal is 
to receive the title of master agility 
champion. These are great, fun activ- 
ities in which any family member 
and any dog can participate! 

BEAGI^ETRLUS 

According it O. C. Greenwood Jr. of 
the Old Dominion Beagle Club, "You 
have brace trials, pack trials, hare tri- 
als (which are run in the northern 
U.S.), and gun dog trials. Greenwood 
has been trialing beagles since the 
late 1960s and probably typifies most 
whose dogs chase wild game. "This 
is a ;/o kill sport and we do everything 
possible to provide cover, food, and 
protection for the rabbits the beagles 
scent. We feed the rabbits 12 months 
out of the year. 

Greenwood runs in brace trials as 




opposed to pack trials. Here, two 
beagles are brought out on their 
leashes and the spectator gallery 
walks nearby, hoping to flush a rab- 
bit. When a rabbit is flushed some- 
one yells "TALLEY HO!" and the 
two beagles in the brace that are com- 
peting against each other are brought 
to where the rabbit was flushed, and 
released. Beagles in this type of trial 
are not gauged on speed; in fact, 
these beagles more or less walk when 
following the rabbit's scent. 

"The beagles are judged on how 
accurately they follow the scent," 
Greenwood pointed out. 

Beagle trialers in Virginia will 
travel from New York to Georgia to 
participate in these weekend events. 
The dogs compete in different classes 
and are segregated by height. 

Beagle trials, like most dog trials, 
are a family sport. "My wife has her 
own beagles and has won at more 
than one trial. We have met some of 
the nicest people at these trials and 
some have remained close personal 
friends for many years," Greenwood 
stated. 



HERDING TRLUS 

Herding trials test a dog's ability to 
take commands and interact, not 
only with its trainer, but also with 
other live animals. As opposed to re- 
trieving game to a handler, it must 
move livestock through a pre- 
designed course. A good herding dog 
seems to be able to "read" the actions 
of the cattle, ducks, or sheep that it 
must herd. 

In these trials, you have a handler 
who gives signals as to what he or she 
wants the dog to do and you have 
herd animals that may have some 
idea of what they want to do. The dog 
and handler work together to apply 
the right amount of guidance to 
move animals through a course. If 
the handler gives too many com- 
mands, points are taken away. If any 
of the livestock misses a gate, points 
are deducted. There are also different 
degrees of difficulty in a herding trial. 
The ultimate goal at a trial is to quali- 
fy by meeting a prescribed standard. 
Dogs that win enough qualification 
"legs" eventi-ially win titles. 




Above, a beagle is hot on the scent of a 
flushed rabbit. Here, an excited fox hound 
stands at the ready. 




Wink Mason, of Goldvein, has 
been training dogs for herding trials 
for over 25 years. "Years ago I saw 
border collies in a herding trial and I 
was fascinated by the dog. I got one 
and started trialing and now teach 
people how to be herding trialers." 

OBEDIENCE TRLUS 

Perhaps the simplest and best way to 
learn about trialing is to enter your 
dog in obedience training. Whether 
you want to trial or not, obedience 
training is the best investment you 
can make. It creates a lasting bond be- 
tween the two of you and, more im- 
portantly, obedience training lays the 
foundation for future training. It has 
the added benefit of perhaps saving 
your dog's life. 

In obedience competition, there 
are three levels: novice, open, and 
utility. A qualifying score means the 
dog has passed all the required exer- 
cises according to UKC or AKC obe- 
dience regulations. Competitions 
offer a wonderful opportunity to not 
only spend time with your dog, but 
also to meet people who may share 
your interests. 




Admittedly, dog trials are not 
widely publicized, and it requires 
some investigation to learn when and 
where they take place. Perhaps the 
best way to find out about dog trials 
in your area is to visit the websites of 
the UKC, the AKC, and American 
Field. If you find someone who does 
run a dog in a particular trial, more 
than likely they would be happy for 
you to come and watch if you have a 
sincere interest in doing so. Watching 
a trial is a good way to become more 
familiar with different dog breeds. 
Plus, you can see first-hand how 
much fun entering can be! Dog trials 
are free outdoor events that offer 
your family the opportunity to par- 
ticipate in something other than the 
latest video game. D 

Clarke C. Jones is a freelance xvriter who spends 
his spare time with his black lab, Luke, Intiiting 
up good stories. You can visit his website at 
unno.clarkec jones.com. 

RESOURCE: 

Skehan, Everett. Fields of Glory, 
Volume 1, 1874-1930; documents the 
early history of bird dog trials. 



iS P: J 






Surface mines make 

great wildlife habitat. 

It just takes time. 

by David Hart 



omewhere ahead of us, 
. Honey weaves through 
j(gr the cover, her nose testing 
the air for the slightest whiff of grouse 
in the thick undergrowth. The habitat 
is a diverse mix of autumn olive trees, 
curtains of grapevines that drape 





over tree limbs, blackberry thickets, 
greenbriers, and a mix of larger trees. 
In short, it's perfect grouse country. I 
carry my shotgun with nervous an- 
ticipation, fully expecting the rush of 
wings as Mike Giles and I stroll down 
a trail that runs across a flat bench. 
Honey, his Llewellyn setter, bounces 
across the path and disappears into a 
thicket. A short rock wall rises on our 
left; a steep hill falls away to our right. 
The ridge, barely 10 yards wide, is tlie 
byproduct of a surface coal mine, 
Giles tells me. At one time it was little 
more than a towering mound of mine 
tailings — dirt and rock scooped 

VIRGINIA WILDLIFE ♦ www.HuntFishVA.com 



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PubHr Acct,s to prJVMic landv behind thi^ ^iipi controUcri by DGIF 
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away from the adjacent hillside as 
miners dug out the coal. Now, how- 
ever, that ridge is covered in a diverse 
mix of timber and short, thick brush. 
I know this 2,000-acre tract deep in 
the knobby mountains of southwest 
Virginia was once a surface mine be- 
cause Giles told me, but until my 
hunting partner reminds me that the 
ridge we are walking on was man- 
made, I have no clue that anything 
besides the powerful forces of nature 
shaped it. The terrain we hunt could 
pass for any typical southwest Vir- 
ginia mountain. Thirty years ago, 
however, this tract was as barren as 

SEPTEMBER 2010 




What was once a surface coal mine is 
now 19,000 acres of great public hunt- 
ing land. 



the moon, the byproduct of a surface 
coal mine. Pretty amazing how the 
land can heal itself over time. 

Giles, president of the Appalachi- 
an Highlands Chapter of the Ruffed 
Grouse Society, isn't just an avid 
grouse hunter. He's also a reclama- 
tion program manager with the Vir- 
ginia Department of Mines, Miner- 
als, and Energy. Some of his favorite 



f 



places to hunt his favorite game bird 
are surface coal mines — those very 
places that are scorned by activist 
groups of many stripes. 

There's no question the practice of 
scraping away everything on the 
Earth's surface — including the trees, 
topsoil and rock — to reach a seam of 
coal leaves behind an ugly scar on en- 
tire mountainsides and the potential 
to ruin the quality of water in nearby 
streams for decades. It's become a 
battle cry for environmental groups 
who want the practice stopped. But 
America needs coal, and surface min- 
ing is often the only way to effectively 
and safely reach shallow coal seams. 

Prior to 1977, mining operations 
were subject to virtually no environ- 
mental oversight and coal companies 
left surface mines to recover on their 
own. Entire mountaintops were 
knocked over, streams and valleys 
were filled with tailings, and the top- 
soil was often buried beneath tons of 
rock anti gravel. After the coal was re- 
moved, the mining companies sim- 
ply moved on to the next mine. It was 
just the cost of doing business. 



}-> 




Virginia's black gold remains at the heart of an ongoing environmental battle. 



passed the Surface Mine Control and 
Reclamation Act (SMCRA) in 1977. 
The nile requires mining companies 
to post a bond, about $3,000 per acre 
in Virginia, which guarantees the 
mining company will follow recla- 
mation guidelines established by the 
1977 law. It's a set of strict rules that 
comes with heavy fines for those 
companies that don't follow the envi- 
ronmental guidelines set forth in the 
law. Virginia took the reclamation 
rules a step further in 1981 by dictat- 
ing best management practices for re- 
forestation of abandoned surface 
mines. 

From Mine to IVildlif e 

"The first thing the mining compa- 
nies have to do when they finish ex- 
tracting the coal is restore the approx- 
imate, original contour of the 
ground," explained Giles. "They 
back-fill and re-grade the hills to 
recreate the mountain prior to the 
mining operation. Before they even 
start mining, they have to remove the 
topsoil and set it aside and then put 
that topsoil back on the land after 
they finish the grading." 

After rebuilding the mountain, 
the topsoil is spread across the rock 
and gravel that has been re-graded 



and the soil is hydro-seeded with a 
variety of grasses. Giles said in the 
years following the passage of the 
SMCRA, reclamation efforts focused 
almost entirely on erosion control. 
Fescue was the primary plant choice 
because it grew fast and established a 
strong root system that held soil in 
place. However, fescue offers little 
benefit to wildlife and can actually 
slow the growth of other, more bene- 
ficial plant life. 

"There were also a lot of white 
pines and autumn olive planted be- 
cause they grew fast and did a good 
job of holding the soil," noted Giles. 

Now mining companies are plac- 
ing more emphasis on creating high- 
quality wildlife habitat by planting a 
variety of species that offer food and 
cover. That shift was the result of ef- 
forts by a variety of conservation 
groups who asked mine companies 
to give more consideration to wildlife 
and long-term resource manage- 
ment. The ground is still overseeded 
with grass as soon as the grading is 
completed, but instead of using fes- 
cue, reclamation contractors use a va- 
riety of grasses like orchard grass, 
millet, perennial rye, and weeping 
lovegrass, along with legumes like 
birdsfoot trefoil, white clover, and 





Ecologists examine life in a stream tliat was restored after a surface mine 
operation finistied. 



Once a silt-chol<ed ditcti due to coal 
extraction, restoration efforts have 
turned it into a vibrant stream that 
supports aquatic insects and fish. 

Kobe lespedeza. All offer some bene- 
fit to wildlife but still hold valuable 
topsoil in place. 

Giles explained that newer recla- 
mation efforts also reduce soil com- 
paction by minimizing the use of 
heavy equipment. Instead of running 
a bulldozer across the ground repeat- 
edly, the topsoil is spread loosely and 
allowed to settle on its own, which 
helps tree seedlings get a better start. 
"You get better root penetration if 
the soil isn't packed down so tight," 
he added. 

As soon as the grass sprouts, con- 
tractors return and plant a mix of tree 
and shrub seedlings at rates of at least 
400 seedlings per acre. One 240-acre 
mine site was replanted with 134,000 
seedlings, including 5,000 crabap- 
ples, 10,000 black oaks, 44,000 red 
oaks, and 10,000 redosier dogwoods. 
White pines are still part of the diver- 
sity, but more emphasis is placed on 
wildlife and commercially-viable 
trees like white and red oaks. Giles 
said some landowners reforest sur- 
face mines with an eye toward com- 
mercial timber harvest in the future, 
t but about 80 percent of the land is 
^ considered unmanaged forest. Once 
^ it's replanted, it's left to return to a 
® completely natural state. 

Lance DeBord, an environmental 



12 



VIRGINIA WILDLIFE ♦ www.HuntFishVA.com 



Lance DeBord, an environmental 
manager with DR Allen and Associ- 
ates, an environmental consulting 
firm that oversees reclamation ef- 
forts, said forestry companies who 
are contracted to help restore these 
lands plant at least five tree species, 
plus a variety of nurse trees and 
shrubs like indigo bush, alder, dog- 
wood, and crabapple. 

"We don't plant autumn olive, al- 
though it was used pretty extensively 
in the past. It's a good wildlife shrub, 
but it is a non-native invasive and we 
want to avoid those," he noted. 

It only takes a year or two before 
wildlife returns. Deer and turkeys 
emerge from adjoining forests to feed 
on new plant growth and ground- 
nesting birds find refuge in the knee- 
high grasses. As the plant life ma- 
tures, deer and turkeys use the dense 
cover not only as a food source, but as 
fawning and nesting cover, as well. 
DeBord said bears also visit the cover 
and songbirds are abundant in the vi- 
brant growth in the years following 
the replanting. Habitat on reclaimed 
mine sites is adding variety to the 
wildlife habitat of neighboring lands 
that consist entirely of mature hard- 
wood forests. 

Reclamation efforts also include 



streams, which have to be returned to 
their original state, or at least close to 
their original contour and gradient, 
said DeBord. 

"Paramont Coal (the largest coal 
company in the region) has restored 
about 10,000 linear feet of streams 
since 2005," he noted. "The cost runs 
anywhere from about $100 to $300 
per linear foot." 

Most of the watersheds are small 
and only hold aquatic insects and a 
few species of small fish like dace, 
chubs, and darters, but DeBord said 
those fish and insects often return 
within months of restoration efforts. 
He recalled one headwater stream 
that had no fish prior to the mining 
operation, but was teeming with 
minnows soon after reclamation ef- 
forts were completed. A natural bar- 
rier was removed during the restora- 
tion work, allowing fish to migrate 
upstream. 

"We plant trees and shrubs along 
the edges of these waters, also, be- 
cause we know shade is very impor- 
tant to the aquatic life," he said. 

Public Hiuitiiig Abounds 

Many of the reclaimed mines, like the 
one Giles and I hunted that mild day 
last November, are open to hunting 




Reclaimed mining sites are replanted with a variety of beneficial shrubs, grasses, 
and trees that attract wildlife. 



by permit from the mining compa- 
nies themselves. However, one of the 
largest surface mines open to hunting 
is a 19,000-acre contiguous tract in 
Dickenson County. It's a prime exam- 
ple of the cooperation between pri- 
vate entities and public interests like 
the DGIF that benefits hunters. The 
PALS, or Public Access Lands for 
Sportsmen, is owned by Heartwood 
Forestland Fund IV and is a diverse 
mix of even-aged mature trees and 
clear-cuts of varying growth stages. It 
offers outstanding habitat for grouse, 
bears, turkeys, and deer, according to 
John Baker, wildlife lands manager 
for the Department. 

"This land has been mined on and 
off for as long as there has been coal 
mining in Virginia and there are some 
active mine operations right now," he 
said, "but most of the land is in vari- 
ous stages of regeneration. The habi- 
tat on the PALS land is much more di- 
verse than it is on much of the area's 
public land." 

The PALS tract has been under a 
cooperative agreement for six years 
and is open only to hunting, fishing, 
and trapping, noted Baker, who has 
experienced some reasonable success 
on past grouse hunts himself. It does- 
n't receive much pressure, but only 
because it is located in a remote sec- 
tion of the state where local hunters 
typically have good access to other 
private land. 

Giles is one of those hunters. Al- 
though he can hunt national forest, 
he often finds himself following his 
setter across reclaimed mine land be- 
cause the habitat is so good. DeBord 
is also an avid hunter and angler. So 
are many of the miners themselves. 

"I grew up hunting and fishing 
this area. I'm in this business because 
I care about the resource and I want to 
do my part to help take care if it," said 
DeBord. "I want the next generation 
to be able to hunt or fish or cut timber 
on these places and say, 'These guys 
did good work.'" D 

David Hart is a fidl-time freelance writer and 
plwtograplKV front Rice. He is a regular contrib- 
utor to numerous national hunting and fishing 
magazines. 



SEPTEMBER 2010 



A Tribute to 





The National Sporting 

Library & Fine Art 

Museum in Middleburg 

preserves the art, 

literature, and culture 

of horse and field sports. 

story and photos 
by Beth Hester 

A mere 45 minutes away from 
the congestion of Washing- 
ton rests the historic town of 
Middleburg. Situated along high- 
way 50, it's nestled into the green 
and mildly rolling landscape of the 
northern end of Virginia's Piedmont 

VIRGINIA WILDLIFE ♦ www.HuntFishVA.com 



region. This is serious hunt country, 
where equine and other field sport 
traditions are deeply embedded in 
the culture. Evidence of the region's 
richness is pervasive, from the prox- 
imity to some of our state's most his- 
toric areas, to the farms and vine- 
yards that dot the side roads. The 
District of Columbia certainly bears 
the distinction of housing many of 
our nation's treasures, but the Na- 
tional Sporting Library (NSL) in 
Middleburg is a unique venue, the 
only facility of its kind in America 
solely devoted to preserving docu- 
ments that chronicle our country's 



drawings, journals, and related field 
sport ephemera grew exponentially. 
Due to the ever-growing collec- 
tion, the NSL eventually occupied 
the pre-Civil War, Federal-style 
building known as Vine Hill before 





Top, new construction melds seamlessly with existing architecture. Shown here, 
a drawing of the NSL complex when completed. 



sporting history. It is also one of Vir- 
ginia's best kept secrets — a destina- 
tion that should be on every sports- 
person's vacation itinerary. 

Preservation 

George Ohrstrom Sr., who was presi- 
dent of the Orange County Hunt, 
and Alexander Mackay-Smith, who 
was editor of The Chronicle of the 
Horse, founded the non-profit in 
1954. The initial idea for a national 
sporting library stemmed from a 
group of friends and colleagues 
bound by a love of foxhunting, who 
wanted their personal sporting book 
collections to remain intact after their 
deaths. Word quickly spread, and the 
collection of books, periodicals, 



moving in 1999 to a brand new, cli- 
mate-controlled building that resem- 
bles a carriage house. The venerable 
Vine Hill manor house, adjacent to 
the library, is currently being con- 
verted into what will be the Fine Art 
Museum, an important component 
of the NSL campus experience. The 
museum, which is due to open in the 
autumn of 2011, will house both per- 
manent and changing collections by 
American, English, and continental 
artists. Sculpture, paintings, works- 
on-paper and sporting artifacts will 
span the eighteenth through the 
twentieth centuries. 

The NSL collections contain over 
17,000 volumes of interest to shooter 
and angler alike, including a 1947 
copy of Eugene Connett's Duck 



Shooting Along the Atlantic Tideivater, a 
handwritten manuscript by Teddy 
Roosevelt, a rare first edition of John 
James Audubon's seven- volume Birds 
of America, an essay by Grover Cleve- 
land (his fascinating and muscular de- 
fense of angling), and several first edi- 
tions of Izaak Walton's The Compleat 
Angler (1653). Of particulcir note is an 
Italian volume of prints, circa 1600, 
originally commissioned by the 
Medici family. The etchings depict a 
variety of hunting techniques, includ- 
ing a mobile duck blind of sorts — a 
frame constructed of hay, affixed to a 
rolling wooden cart. These prints de- 
pict the social life of communities re- 
volving around, and bonding 
through, the seasonal rounds of hunt- 
ing, fishing, and farming. As impor- 
tant as the thrill visitors get from 
viewing these historic volumes first- 
hand is the visceral sense of tradition 
and continuity that link the sporting 
adventures of other eras with our 
own. 

Though many of these books are 
housed in the rare book room, the 
readily accessed general stacks are 
categorized by topic, then by the au- 
thor's last name. There are books writ- 
ten during the 'golden age' of sport, 
like those by Mary Orvis Marbury, 




The historic Red Fox Inn. 



SEPTEMBER 2010 



Roderick Haig-Brown, and Nash 
Buckingham, and also by contempo- 
rary authors like James Prosek and 
Nick Lyons. It would take multiple 
visits to really appreciate the breadth 
of the various collections, but librari- 
an Lisa Campbell is a knowledgeable 
and entertaining guide who makes 
the visitor feel at home among the 
NSL's dizzying array of treasures. 

Scholarship 

Casual browsers are always welcome 
to peruse the stacks or relax in an 
armchair with a fresh copy of Gray's 
Sporting Journal, but the NSL is also a 
major resource for field sport schol- 
ars, journalists, and researchers. The 
John H. Daniels Fellowship, estab- 
lished in 2007, helps to support schol- 
ars and independent writers who use 
the facilities to do research across a 
broad spectrum of disciplines. 
Lengths of residency range from two 
weeks to more than six months. 

Director of Administration Rick 
Stoutamyer believes that the fellow- 
ship program plays a central role in 
the library's mission: "Going for- 
ward, our goal is to take the library to 
the next level, moving from our cur- 
rent reputation as an excellent local 
and regional facility, toward one with 
an increasingly international reach. 
The fellowship program is crucial to 
making the library truly useful from 



an academic standpoint, helping to 
perpetuate both sporting culture and 
land preservation. The library and art 
museum as complementary re- 
sources will draw visitors in from 
more far-flung areas." 

Liz Tobey, Ph.D. is director of 
communications and research and 
currently administers the fellowship 
program. She's been impressed not 
only by the growing number of peo- 
ple applying for the program, but 
also by the wide-ranging subject mat- 
ter: Dueling, conservation, stable de- 
sign, equestrian costume, all topics 
that testify to the influence field 
sports have had on various aspects of 
culture. To date, former Daniels Fel- 
lows have lectured and published on 
topics as varied as: "Anglers & the 
Conservation of Atlantic Salmon Stocks 
in North America," and "The Hunter's 
Eye in Martin Johnson Heade's Land- 
scapes and Still Lives." Although the 
NSL is generally a non-circulating li- 
brary, eager readers may access cer- 
tain volumes via inter-library loan, 
and lists of the collections may be ac- 
cessed online. 

Ms. Tobey emphasizes that the 
NSL encourages writers and inde- 
pendent researchers who don't come 
specifically from academic back- 
grounds: "Our resources are a public 
treasure, and we actively encourage 
sporting literacy. Our Fellows go on 
to lecture and publish, thus helping 




to pass on the rituals and traditions of 
field sport. Along with game wardens 
and park personnel, hunters, anglers, 
and birdwatchers are all on the front 
lines, exposed to what goes on in the 
environment... so when you educate 
people about sporting traditions, you 
are also exposing them to ideas about 
conservation and land use." 




Comfortable surroundings invite the 
visitor to relax and browse. 




F. Turner Reuter Jr., Curator of Fine 
Arts for the NSL. Left, Teddy Roosevelt's 
manuscript is on display in the rare 
manuscript room. 

Outreach 

Through a combination of changing 
exhibits, films, lectures, and sym- 
posia, the library reaches out to the 
community at large. Some recent ex- 
amples: The Lives of Dogs in Literature, 
Art, and Ephemera. Through Decem- 
ber 11, 2010, visitors can view 18th- 
and 19th-century dog collars, books, 
documents, and paintings, all cele- 
brating the complex relationship be- 
tween dogs and humans. In 2009, a 
one-day symposium was held titled, 
"A River Never Sleeps: Cofiservation, 



History, and the Fly Fishing River." 
John Ross of Upperville lectured on 
"Native Trout Species of Virginia," and 
Hoagy Carmichael spoke about "Tlte 
Grand Cascapedia: Salmon River of His- 
tory." 

The NSL also offers programs for 
young readers. The newest is sched- 
uled for September 8th at 2:00 p.m. 
Author and artist James Prosek will 
talk about his children's book, "Bird, 
Butterfly, Eel," and also give a paint- 
ing demonstration. 

Because of the success of such pro- 
grams, and the popularity of the cata- 
logs and publications that the NSL 
has produced to date, there are plans 
to establish a permanent publishing 
arm, which would further extend the 
educational reach of both the library 
and the fine art museum. 

Vine Hill, from Historic 

Home to Museum 

of Sporting Art 

Turner Reuter Jr. is curator of fine arts 
for the NSL and one of the primary 
overseers of the Vine Hill conversion. 
Once the renovation and the 7,500- 
square-foot additions are completed, 
the museum will boast 11 galleries, a 
large loading area, storage, and office 
space. 

During a recent tour tlirough the 
Vine Hill construction site, it was re- 
markable to see the exacting effort 
and skill it takes to expand and reju- 
venate a historic building. The exter- 
nal site plan, which encompasses the 
existing buildings, highlights Tessa 
Pullen's bronze sculpture of a weary 
horse, a sober memorial to the ap- 
proximately 1,350,000 horses that 
died during the Civil War (p. 14). 

With lifelong ties to the area, 
Reuter is the proprietor of Middle- 
burg's Red Fox Inn, where as a young 
man he hung his growing inventory 
of sporting art. He is also the author 
oi Animal & Sporting Artists in Ameri- 
ca, an art collector, gun dog enthusi- 
ast, farmer, and gallery owner. His 
extensive equestrian resume in- 
cludes tenure as master of the Pied- 
mont Fox Hounds from 1996 until 





A view of the charming NSL and meticulously kept grounds. 
Below, new construction honors the character of existing buildings. 



2002. His passion for foxhunting 
comes not only from the synergy be- 
tween horse, rider and dog, but from 
a celebration of the land itself. The rit- 
ual of foxhunting requires large 
swaths of open land. Being a good 
steward of that land, and maintain- 
ing it on a day-to-day basis, forges an 
intimate bond with the countryside. 

Turner is excited about the muse- 
um's 2011 inaugural exhibition de- 
signed to educate the general public 
about animal and sporting art, and 
also about the landmark, illustrated 
catalog produced for the exhibition 
by the Library, and by the museum's 
curatorial staff. It will include impor- 
tant essays and commentary by 
prominent art historians. The specific 
dates surrounding the museum's 
opening have yet to be announced, 
but updates will be available via the 
NSL website. 

The completed National Sporting 
Library & Fine Art Museum campus 
will be the newest jewel in Virginia's 
cultural crown. It will provide a 
venue for visitors to experience the 
importance of sporting art and litera- 
ture as a reflection of American histo- 
ry and social life. It will enable new 
generations of scholars and sports- 



men to better interpret creative ex- 
pressions of our nation's rich sport- 
ing heritage. D 

Bet]] Hester is a loriter and freelance photogra- 
pher from Portsmoiitlt. Her passiois include 
reading, sliooting, kayaking, fishing, tying salt- 
ivater flies, and tending lier Iierb garden. 

Contact Information 

National Sporting Library 

& Fine Art Museum 

lozThe Plains Road 

Post Office Box 1335 

Middleburg, Virginia 201 18-1335 

540-687-6542 

www.nsl.org 



17 




Ij 




y r-i 










©Dwight Dyke 



^:^<''x 



Giant shellcrackers are common h 
fisheries biologist Chad Boyce. 



one held by DGIF 




is an angling gold mine. 



byMarcN.McGlade 



-, or those unfamiliar with the 
1 Suffolk lakes, suffice it to say 

L this region of the Old Domin- 
ion is stacked with exceptional fish- 
eries. Western Branch Reservoir 
qualifies as one. This reservoir spans 
1,279 acres, and is the largest of the 
Suffolk lakes. Similar to Lake Prince, 
the reservoir is owned by the city of 
Norfolk, and provides Southside and 
Tidewater anglers with an incredible 
fishery. Its moniker derives from the 
stream on which it was impounded 
in 1962: the western branch of the 
Nansemond River. This horseshoe- 
shaped lake has Lake Prince up- 
stream on one arm and Burnt Mills 
Reservoir upstream on the other. 

Western Branch provides anglers 
the opportunity to catch a wide vari- 
ety of species such as largemouth 
bass, shellcracker, bluegill, black 
crappie, white perch, yellow perch, 
and chain pickerel. In addition to 
these naturally reproducing fishes. 



the lake is stocked with striped bass 
and muskellunge. Of the 25 species 
for which the Department issues tro- 
phy fish certificates, an astonishing 
13 inhabit Western Branch Reservoir. 

State Records 

chad Boyce is a fisheries biologist 
from the Department's district office 
in Chesapeake who manages the 
reservoir. He affirms the water body 
has a healthy population of several 
species. 

Western Branch Reservoir is home 
to two state-record fish. A surprising 
catch of the state-record Roanoke 
bass (Ambloplites cavifrons) occurred 
on May 28, 2005. Harry G. Swauger 
caught the 2-pound, 9-ounce trophy. 
Not surprisingly, the other state 
record is for a white catfish (Ameiurus 
catus). Thomas Elkins caught the 7- 
pound, 6-ounce whiskerfish on 
March 24, 1992. 




Big largemouths are plentiful in Western Branch Reservoir. Photo ©Marc McGlade. 



"As for the white catfish, these fish 
are native and very common in the 
Nansemond River drainage and the 
Western Branch of the Nansemond 
River," explained Boyce. "Very few 
white cats weighing more than three 
or four pounds will be caught in the 
local rivers. It is likely that the stabili- 
ty of a lake environ, versus a more dy- 
namic riverine system, allow the 
white cats to flourish, and there is 
likely little competition from other 
catfish (such as blue cats). However, 
there are some large channel cats in 
Western Branch." 

The biologist indicates the 
Roanoke bass state record is a bit of a 
mystery. According to Boyce, this is 
the first documented report of a 
Roanoke bass being caught in the 
reservoir. 

"It just so happens it was a state 
record," he quipped. 

Water is pumped by pipeline from 
the Nottoway River and Lake Gas- 
ton, both of which have populations 
of Roanoke bass. Boyce says it is pos- 



sible a small Roanoke made it 
through the pipeline and ultimately 
into Western Branch. 

"A more likely possibility," he 
said, "is what we call angler trans- 
port, meaning that an angler released 
this or other Roanoke bass into the 
lake or even released into a lake that 
spills into Western Branch, such as 
Prince or Burnt Mills." 



The ''Branch'' 
Lx)wdown 

This fertile reservoir is known for 
outstanding largemouth bass fishing, 
as well as being one of the top trophy 
sunfish producers in the state. Mas- 
sive redear sunfish (shellcrackers) in- 
habit the woody underwater habitats 
located in the scenic reservoir. 




Red wigglers paired with a sinker will 
fool some feisty redears (shellcrackers). 



The ramp at Western Branch accom- 
modates appropriately-sized boats. 



20 



VIRGINIA WILDLIFE ♦ www.HuntFishVA.com 



"We frequently see shellcrackers 
weighing more than one and a half 
pounds in our spring sampling sur- 
veys," Boyce said. "Striped bass are 
targeted by devoted anglers as well, 
and they are still stocked in Western 
Branch every year. Muskies are 
stocked at a low rate, but a few big 
ones have been caught through the 
years." 

Regarding crappies, the biologists 
have only collected black crappie in 
Western Branch, as they are the fish 
native to this drainage. The average 
size crappie seems to be around 10 to 
11 inches, but Boyce and his col- 
leagues see some larger fish in their 
sampling, with some up to 13 to 14 
inches. 

"We have collected white cats in 
our gill netting samples that were a 
few ounces heavier than the current 
state record, and we have captured 
many white cats just over seven 
pounds," Boyce added. "All were re- 
leased alive, so I know for a fact that a 
new state record could exist in the 
lake." 

Boyce acknowledged that it 
would be unlikely that another tro- 
phy Roanoke bass is in the lake, but 
he never would have guessed that 
the current state record would have 
come from Western Branch! 

The main draw to this scenic reser- 
voir is the big largemouth bass and 
giant shellcrackers. Boyce doubts 
that anyone would ever seek 
Roanoke bass specifically, but some 
anglers target catfish. He believes a 
big white cat will probably be an acci- 
dental catch while fishing for the 
more popular channel cats. 

Boyce added an interesting tidbit 
he received from Scott Herrmann, the 
biologist who identified and certified 
the trophy Roanoke bass. "According 
to Scott, the gentleman who caught 
the fish was not sure of exactly what 
he had caught. He thought it might 
be a big bluegill. He caught the fish 
on a Rat-L-Trap or similar lure, then 
put the fish in the boat livewell and 
eventually took it home, alive. Con- 
veniently, he had a koi pond at home 
and decided to put the fish in there to 



keep it alive, and called DGIF to get 
an official idenfificafion. Once Scott 
identified the fish and took an official 
weight (which was the exact weight 
of the fish at capture), the process 
began to certify the fish as an official 
state record." 

A Sure Bet 

Suffolk is sandwiched between Vir- 
ginia's incredible saltwater fishing to 
the east and Lake Gaston and Buggs 
Island to the west. Surprisingly, the 
Suffolk lakes can be overlooked, de- 
spite their top-heavy rankings when 
it comes to the Old Dominion's tro- 
phy fish certificates. 

Western Branch Reservoir is a spe- 
cial place for anglers who desire vari- 
ety. It's a 12-month fishery with beau- 
tiful scenery and willing fish. Come 
see for yourself. G 

Marc N. McGlnde is a writer and photographer 
from Midlothian, zolio relishes the opportunity to 
venture to Suffolk to fish any of the Suffolk lakes. 




DGIF fisheries biologists perform 
etectrofishing to sample various species 
and collect important data such as 
length measurements (above). 




Western Branch Reservoir Information 

For fisheries information and regulations regarding Western Branch Reser- 
voir, contact our district office in Chesapeake at (757) 465-6812, or visit online 
at www.HuntFishVA.com. 

The city of Norfolk website (www.norfolk.gov/utilities/resources/) has lake 
maps in Adobe Acrobat Reader format. Anglers are required to have a city of 
Norfolk boat permit (in addition to a Virginia freshwater fishing license) to 
launch private boats at Western Branch Reservoir. These can be purchased 
through a mail-in form from the website, or through local outlets. 
The Western Branch Reservoir boat launch is below the Lake Prince Dam on 
Route 605 near Providence Church. Bank fishing is prohibited. Gas motors as 
powerful as 9.9 horsepower are allowed. The city of Norfolk has amended 
their codes to allow boats with outboard motors larger than 9.9 horsepower 
to access the lake if the gas tanks are removed or the outboard is disabled 
(prop removed). Western Branch Reservoir is open sunrise to sunset, all year. 



SEPTEMBER 2010 



21 



C0!X)€t©fcFMr 



story and photos by Gail Brown 

' I hey' re four of the best ambas- 
I sadors Virginia could have: 
X- wild things who've never 
met the child (or for that matter, 
adult) they didn't like. And it appears 
the feeling is mutual. Many fair-goers 
return each year to Heritage Village 
to learn about the commonwealth's 
natural resources and get their pic- 
ture taken with one of the Depart- 
ment's handsome four. Can you 
name them? Well, not by name — 
wild things don't have names— but 
by species? They're the corn snake, 
the Eastern king, the mole king, and 
the black rat snake. They have been 
held by so many people for so many 
years that they're as much a part of 
the fair experience as com dogs, rac- 
ing pigs, fast rides, and rainy days. 



Like measuring yourself against a 
line on the kitchen wall, having a pic- 
ture taken with any one of these rep- 
tiles marks the passing of time — ^just 
in a more exciting way. Too bad these 
snakes can't talk — the stories they 
could tell! George Bush Sr. was presi- 
dent when the com snake made his 
first trip to the fair and he (the com 
snake) hasn't missed a year since. 
That's almost two decades of meet- 
ing and greeting people who want to 
learn about, and want their kids to 
enjoy, Virginia's natural resources. 

To find Heritage Village, just wind 
your way to the left after entering 
through the tunnel. Keep going, al- 
ways heading toward the tree line. 
On the way you'll pass the Farm Bu- 
reau Center, the Ferris wheel, the 
merry-go-round, and all that good 
food. Just walk through the gate, 
sugar-covered kids and all, and on 




look carefully; you might find a shark's 
tooth, too! Below, be calm and gentle 
when holding the corn snake. 

down to the bottom of the hill. Like 
that neon-colored cotton candy 
they've waited for all year, the memo- 
ries they'll make as they learn about 
our commonwealth will stick, too. 
Here you'll find representatives from 
Virginia's natural resource agencies 
with exciting activities for everyone. 





Nature has a reason for those colors and textures 
Learning why with your friends is great fun. 



While the Department's display 
helps us understand the natural world 
we experience today, the Department 
of Historic Resources' display of Na- 
tive American artifacts helps make our 
cultural history come to life. Behind 
the buildings you can experience a 
Virginia Civil War encampment, 
African-American cultural displays, 
antit]ue farm machinery, and much . 

Zoe Rogers, visitor services special- 
ist for the Department of Conserva- 
tion and Recreation, claims she can't 
get over the excitement on the kids' 
faces as they "travel" to three state 
parks and pan for gold (Lake Anna 
State Park), hunt for sharks' teeth 
(Westmoreland State Park) or search 
for lucky stones (Fairy Stone St. Park). 
Yet, the enthusiasm in her voice gives 
it away. The grownups, too, are having 
a blast. "It's the expression on their 
faces — the amazement when they find 
something — that's so wonderful! It's 
like a great adventure," stated Rogers. 
"The children are learning all about our 
cultural and environmental treasures 
and having a great time." 

SEPTEMBER 2010 



Once they pocket their finds, the 
kids (and flexible adults) can crawl 
through the Association of Soil and 
Water Conservation Districts' under- 
ground tunnel to discover life from a 
worm's point of view. For informa- 
tion about plants above ground, the 
Department of Forestry will help an- 
swer your questions, and the Depart- 
ment of Environmental Quality's 
hands-on activities help everyone 
learn the multiple functions of a 
healthy wetland. Wildlife educator 
Suzie Gilley, who has represented the 
Department at the fair for the last 25 
years, believes "the combined efforts 
of all of the natural resource agencies 
give everyone a picture of what 
things need to look like as we build a 
sustainable environment." 

This year the agencies will be 
back, as will Gilley and those famous 
reptiles — all waiting to greet you! 
Just bring that camera. . . and a great, 
big smile. D 

Gail Brozoii is a retired teacher and school 
adininistmtor. 




Just lool< at those smiles! Nothing scary 
in this tunnel. 



23 



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First Deer 



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story and photos 
by Bruce Ingram 

•^ • ' e:?^ was wondering ir you 
would take me deer hunt- 
ing over the Thanksgiving 
holidays," asked my son-in-law, 
David Reynolds. "I've always want- 
ed to go but no one would ever take 
me." 

When he said that, memories 
came flooding back — and many of 
them weren't pleasant ones. Like 
David, I was older when I ventured 
forth on my maiden deer hunting ex- 
pedition in 1985. My late father-in- 



24 



law kindly consented to let me go 
with his Alleghany County hunt 
club. The group's way of hunting 
was to implement "pushes" with 
participants designated as drivers or 
standers. As a novice I was relegated 
to being a stander, and on the first 
drive of the morning, I downed a 
Bath County four pointer that hap- 
pened to amble my way. The thrill 
was such that every autumn since, 
the pursuit of whitetails, turkeys, and 
various small game creatures has 
been a major and marvelous part of 
my life. 



Top, the author shows Reynolds some 
deer droppings near a food plot. 
Here, Reynolds learns the safe use of 
a firearm before his first hunt. 

Before that momentous event, 
though, my most vivid memories 
were how I had asked a series of 
friends and acquaintances if they 
would either let me venture afield 
with them or allow me to hunt on 
their land. The response was always 
negative, with the most common rea- 
son being that I might actually kill a 
whitetail — which would be one less 
deer for them. 

VIRGINIA WILDLIFE ♦ www.HuntFishVA.com 




Buchanan's Sherry Crumley, 
Sixth Congressional District repre- 
sentative for the DGIF board, was 
instrumental in helping the state 
initiate an apprentice hunting li- 
cense. 

"I had read where the Na- 
tional Shooting Sports 
Foundation listed Virginia 
|i as one of the states un- 
11 friendly to new hunters 
if with our mandatory hunter 
T safety classes, minimum 
age limits for hunting, and 



going through the time commitment 
of taking a hunter education class," 
she continued. "In no way does the 
apprentice license take away from 
our hunter education program. The 
apprentice program is just another 
way to introduce people to hunting." 

Why Veteran Hunters Should 
Mentor Other Adults 

Like me, Ms. Crumley did not begin 
hunting until she was in her 30s 
when she joined her husband, Jim, on 
initial outings. 



Top, the author points out a white oal< that he often hunts nearby. Tree identification is a sl<ill that new hunters should 
master. Here, Reynolds learns the basics of blind construction before going afield. 



So I immediately told David that I 
would be excited to take him afield 
and teach him the basics of the pas- 
time. David had decided that he 
wanted to try deer hunting less than a 
month before the opening of the 
firearms season, and with the con- 
straints of his job, it was too late to 
take a hunter safety class. His best op- 
tion, then, was to purchase Virginia's 
new Apprentice Hunting License 
(AHL). 



no Sunday hunting," she noted. "I 
felt that this was £in image that we 
needed to change." 

Crumley contacted the Ohio 
DNR, which had recently begun an 
apprentice license program, and 
confirmed what she already knew: 
that new hunters often learn best 
from experienced mentors. 

"I also learned that apprentice li- 
censes give adults the chance to see 
if they will enjoy hunting without 



"Nothing beats a veteran hunter 
acting as a mentor for a novice," she 
explained. "One of the first things 
that Jim taught me was that the expe- 
rience was always more important 
than the kill. When my husband took 
me on my first hunt, and I saw the 
sun rise and heard a gobbler, I was 
hooked. I could have read about the 
joys of the outdoors on a piece of 
paper, but it wouldn't have had the 
same impact." {cont.pg.27) 



SEPTEMBER 2010 



25 




While squirrel hunting, Reynolds came across this rub, an important sign to be learned in the pursuit of deer. 
Acorns (above) are an integral part of a deer's diet, as are persimmons (below). Learning about soft mast will help 
new hunters understand deer behavior. 



Virginia AHL Facts 

The new apprentice hunting license 
serves as a first-time Virginia resi- 
dent or nonresident hunting license 
and is good for two years. The cost is 
$11 for residents and $21 for non- 
residents. 

An innportant safety feature of the 
new license Is that the apprentice 
hunter must be accompanied and 
directly supervised by a hunter pos- 
sessing a valid Virginia hunting li- 
cense who is an adult over age 18 
(the mentor hunter). "Directly su- 
pervised" is defined in the new leg- 
islation as "when a person over 18 
maintains a close visual and verbal 
contact with, provides adequate di- 
rection to, and can immediately as- 
sume control of the firearm from 
the apprentice hunter." This re- 
quirement is in place because the 
apprentice hunter will not have had 
to meet the hunter education re- 
quirement as a condition of pur- 
chasing the license. 



The apprentice license does not 
qualify the holder to purchase a reg- 
ular hunting license, nor exempt the 
holder from compliance with De- 
partment regulations. A hunter edu- 
cation course must be successfully 
completed to obtain a regular hunt- 
ing license. 

A bear, deer, turkey license and all 
applicable stamps or permits are re- 
quired in addition to the apprentice 
license. 

Previous Virginia resident and non- 
resident hunting license holders 
may not use an apprentice license. 
For more information: 866-721- 
6911, or www.dgif.virginia.gov/ 
hunting/apprentice-license. 

Mentoring Guidelines 

Emphasize the quality of the experi- 
ence and not the harvest. 
Comply with all laws, regulations, 
and license requirements. 
Demonstrate good sportsmanship. 
Know your partner's endurance 



level and attention span during the 
outdoor experience. 

• Share in making preparations ahead 
of time (such as scouting the area, 
knowing weather forecast, acquiring 
permissions needed). 

• Let someone know your plan: where 
you are planning to go and when you 
are planning to return. 

• Be prepared in case of emergencies. 

• Proper clothing may be an important 
factor during extreme hot or cold 
weather conditions. 

• Make preparations for another ad- 
venture, while the thrill of the hunt is 
still fresh. 

Hunting Facts 

y Hunting Boosts the Economy: Each 
year in Virginia, hunters spend more 
than $480 million in trip-related and 
equipment expenditures. Hunting 
and fishing generate an estimated 
$128 million in state and local taxes 
and directly support more than 
24,000jobs in the state. 



26 



VIRGINIA WILDLIFE ♦ www.HuntFishVA.com 




Veteran hunters should set up in close proximity 
to new hunters holding the AHL in order to assist 
if necessary. Right, Reynolds tries his hand at a 
grunt call in the hopes of drawing in a buck. 



{ Hunting Contributes to Conserva- 
tion: Hunting license dollars con- 
tributed significantly to funding the 
acquisition of thousands of acres of 
land for hunting and habitat. Over the 
years, the DGIF has acquired more 
than 200,000 acres of land available to 
the public for hunting, fishing, wildlife 
watching, hiking and other recreation. 

Z' Hunting Promotes Wildlife Popula- 
tion Management: Hunting reduces 
pressure on crops, protects expensive 
landscaping, cuts down on deer in the 
roadways, and prevents deer over- 
grazing an area and destroying habitat 
needed by other wildlife such as song- 
birds. 

^ Hunting Promotes Healthy Minds, 
Spirits, and Bodies: Being outdoors 
and active builds strength and im- 
proves your overall health. 
Hunters Share the Bounty: Hunters 
are providing much-needed protein to 
Virginia's families by donating a deer 
or a portion of it to Hunters for the 
Hungry, www.h4hungry.org. 




SEPTEMBER 2010 



Crumley 
emphasized 
that it is every bit 
as important for veteran 
sportsmen to take adults afield as it is 
for them to nurture youngsters. An 
adult who learns from a veteran 
hunter about the rudiments of sign, 
wildlife foods, hunting tactics, and 
more can then teach his or her own 
children those same fundamentals. 

A Checklist for the 
New Deer Hunter 

My father-in-law was elderly and had 
health issues when he introduced me 
to deer hunting at the end of his hunt- 
ing years, so I had no mentor to teach 
me the basics. In an attempt to gain 
that knowledge, I tried reading vari- 
ous hunting magazines, but at that 
time (and now) they contained almost 



exclusively stories on how to kill big 
bucks — information totally useless to 
someone new to the pursuit. 

With that in mind, I helped David 
with information I knew he could 
use, starting with the purchase of a 
gun. Many sportsmen possess nu- 
merous guns, but for the novice, that 
is £U"i impractical and expensive op- 
tion. 1 helped my son-in-law buy a 12- 
gauge Remington autoloader — a 
gun, I told him, that he could also use 
for turkeys and small game. Later, in 
fact, he employed the scattergun to 
pursue squirrels on my family's Bote- 
tourt County land. Before David 
went afield, the two of us spent time 
discussing gun handling safety and 
sighting in. I also reviewed with 
him the importance of hear- 
ing protection. 

Remembering one 
of my first solo deer 
hunts, I stupidly 
wore jeans, a cot- 
ton shirt and socks, 
anci a dark wind- 
breaker. When rain 
began to fall and the 
temperature plum- 
meted, I left the 
woods wet and shiver- 
ing. Determined not to 
have David repeat my mis- 
takes, I educated him on the 
virtues of polypro and merino wool 
underwear, modern camo, and the 
necessity of wearing blaze orange 
and comfortable socks and boots. 

For a new hunter, such whitetail 
sign as droppings, rubs, scrapes, foot- 
prints, and game trails is a mystery. I 
helped David understand the impor- 
tance of all these things. I also gave 
David a grunt call and instructed him 
in the various sounds that deer make. 
We then reviewed the whitetail's 
affinity for white anci red oak 
acorns — the soft mast foods deer con- 
sume — and how food plots, agricul- 
tural areas, and fields can attract 
these big game animals. 

An underrated aspect to hunting 
education is learning how to select a 



27 



place to set up. I showed my son-in- 
law how to set close enough to a 
game trail where he would be within 
the 40-yard range of tlie 12 gauge but 
not so close that whitetails would be 
more likely to spot him. 

The Hunt 

David's first deer hunt took place the 
day before Thanksgiving, on land my 
family owns in the Sinking Creek 
Valley of Craig County. At 4:15, as we 
sat side by side and gazed up the 
mountain, three deer began strolling 
toward us. When the trio moved 
within 40 yards, David's breathing 
became noticeably louder — and, 
quite honestly, so did mine. But the 
lead doe spotted us and quickly led 
the others away. 

The next morning we were at the 
same stand site and this time, around 
10:30, seven whitetails began passing 
by. The Roanoke resident picked out 
a mature doe and touched off the au- 
toloader All the deer ran away and 
David was afraid that he had missed, 
but this was just an opportunity for 
yet another lesson — how to find and 
follow a blood trail. 

I told David that we would sepa- 
rate ourselves by about 10 yards and 
search the ground for blood. About 
20 yards out from where the shot had 
been fired, David located the first 
drops of blood. And some 50 yards 
later, we found the doe herself. Spon- 
taneous whoops erupted from both 
of us, and I have to say that it was the 
biggest thrill 1 experienced hunting 
or fishing this past season. Soon after- 
ward, I led David through the 
process of field dressing a whitetail, 
letting him go through the actual 
process himself. 

♦ ♦ ♦ 
Two months later, David and his 
wife, Sarah, came over for a meal of 
venison soup. As we were finishing 
up, 1 was ecstatic to hear David say 
these words: "Next year, my goal is to 
kill two deer, so we can have more 
meat in the freezer." D 

Bruce Ingram has authored main/i^uide books, 
most recently Fly and Spin Fishing for River 
Smallmouths ($19.25). Contact him at 
be Jngram(."'jitno.com for more information. 

28 








Jmmal 



)cnrT«»jJfc" 



2010 Outdoor 
Calendar of Events 

Unless otherwise noted, for current infor- 
mation and registration on workshops go 
to the "Upcoming Events" page on our 
website at www.HuntFishVA.com or call 
804-367-7800. 

September 11-12: Eastern Regional 
Big Game Contest, www.vpsa.org. 

September 25: Youth Deer Hunting 
Day, (ages 15 and younger). 

September 25-26: Western Regional 
Big Game Contest and State 
Championship, www.iwla-rh.org. 

September 9, 11, 16, 18 & 21: Photo- 
graphing Colors, Patterns & Textures 
with Lynda Richardson, Lewis Ginter 
Botanical Garden, Richmond. Go to 
www.Iyndarichardsonphotogra- 
phy.com and look under 2010 Work- 
shops or www.lewisginter.org and 
look under Adult Education or call 
(804)262-9887X322. 

September 23, 25, 30 and October 2 

& 5: Learn to Use Your Digital SLR 
Camera with Lynda Richardson, Lewis 
Ginter Botanical Garden, Richmond. 
Go to www.lyndarichardson 
photography.com and look under 
2010 Workshops or www.lewis 
ginter.org and look under Adult Ed- 
ucation or call (804) 262-9887 X322. 

October 1-3: Hunter Skills Weekend, 
Holiday Lake; (434) 248-5444 or 
http://hoIidaylake4h.com/. 

October 2: Women Exploring Loudoun 
Outdoors, (ages 14 and older). For 
more informatton: www.loudoun 
iwla.org. For registration: 
lcciwla_welo@hotmail.com or call 
(540) 535-8891 or (703) 939-4089. 

October 7-10: Eastern Shore Birding 
and Wildlife Festival, Cape Charles. 

SEPTEMBER 2010 



October 7, 9, 14, 16 & 19: A;/ Introduc- 
tion to Photographing Birds with Lynda 
Richardson at Lewis Ginter Botanical 
Garden, Richmond. Go to 
w^ww.lyndarichardsonphoto 
graphy.com and look under 2010 
Workshops or www.lewisginter.org 
cind look under Adult Education or 
call (804) 262-9887X322. 

October 16: Youth Fall Turkey Hunt 
Day, (ages 15 and younger). 







Tlte Barking Tree Frog and 
Other Curious Tales 

by Diane Casto Tennant 

The University of Virginia Press, 2009 

www.upress.virginia.edu 

434-982-2932 

"I have slept on the beach beside a nest of 
sea turtles and crawled through iinuidy 
caves. I have held the skull of a Jamestown 
settler four hundred years after his death 
and plastered dinosaur bones for trans- 
port. ..I have chased sharks at 3 a.m., war- 
blers at 4, skeletons after breakfast, 
meteors at midnight and whales around 
the clock. Wio says science isn 'tfun ? " 

- Diane Casto Tennant 

Turning hard science into entertain- 
ing reading for the lay person is hard 
to pull off, but Diane Tennant, award- 
winning science writer for The Virgin- 
ian-Pilot, manages to do the job with 
ease. 

This collection of twenty-four nar- 
ratives covers a broad range of sub- 
jects, and Tennant's chatty, casual 



style cleverly envelopes the facts and 
figures. Her lively tales on such var- 
ied topics as Virginia's cretaceous 
rocks and fossils, loggerhead sea tur- 
tles, or prothonotary warblers pain- 
lessly impart important and amazing 
lessons about our natural world. The 
book's central narrative, "A Cosmic 
Tale," is a real page turner. It high- 
lights the amazing story of the errant 
meteor tliat crashed into the Chesa- 
peake Bay region over 35 million 
years ago, an event that helped shape 
portions of Virginia's signature coast- 
line. 

Perhaps the book's best character- 
istic is the gritty sense of adventure 
that percolates between the pages, il- 
lustrating that exciting journeys 
don't have to assume a National Geo- 
graphic-style expeditionary scale to 
enjoy. Tennant's book uncovers the 
very real adventures and natural 
wonders that are just around the cor- 
ner if only we take the time to open 
our eyes and pay attention. D 



Out(io«''^*« 




Thomas Guess, son of Tom Guess 
with DGIF, catches his first fish 
during the family vacation to 
Douthat State Park in June. 



29 




Virginia Tech's College of Natural 
Resources in cooperation with Blue 
Ridge Parkway 75, Inc. is hosting 
Imagining tiie Blue Ridge Parkway 
for the 21st Century: Sustaining 
Communities, Environments, and 
Economies" \u October. 

For information, search events, 
http://blueridgeparkway75.org/. 
But hurry, registration deadline 
is September 24, 2010. 



Wildlife £r Boating Info 
on VirginiaGov 

A new "Mapping Virginia" section of the state government portal now in- 
cludes information about our wildlife management areas, boating access 
sites, and destinations on the statewide Birding and Wildlife Trail. While there, 
you can also link to our site to purchase hunting and fishing licenses. 

Check it out at www.virginia.gov! 



Quail Action Plan 




Department staff are working with a broad range of public and private 
partners to restore critical upland habitat needed by the bobwhite quail 
to thrive. Among the many initiatives underway are: 

Establishment of early succession wildlife focus areas 
across the state, in concert with the work performed by 
Soil & Water Conservation Districts in Virginia; 

Wildlife professionals assisting with delivery of USDA 
Farm Bill programs to landowners that benefit quail and 
other, early succession wildlife species; and 

Establishment ofdemonstration areas that showcase 
technical tools put in place to effectively manage for quail 

For more information about the quail plan, go to: 

www.HuntFishVA.com/wildlife/quail/ 

action-plan/quail-action-plan. pdf 

To contact a private lands wildlife biologist: 

marc.puckett(a)dgif.virginia.gov 




Mandatory Duck 
Stamps & HIP 




II hunters who plan to inunt doves, 
waterfowl, rails, woodcock, snipe, 
coots, gallinules, or moorhens in Vir- 
ginia must be registered with the Vir- 
ginia Harvest Information Program 
(HIP). HIP is required each year and a 
^^ new registration number is needed for 
^pthe 20 1 0-20 1 1 hunting season. To ob- 
tain a new HIP number, register online 
at ^ ^TO-.VAHIP.f om or call 1-888-788- 

■9772. 
In addition, to hunt waterfowl in 
Virginia hunters must obtain a Federal 
Duck Stamp and the Virginia Migratory 
Waterfowl Conservation Stamp. The 
annual Migratory Waterfowl Conserva- 
tion Stamp can be purchased for $ 1 0.00 
(resident or non-resident) from VDGIF 
license agents or from the Depart- 
ment's website. To request collector 
stamps and prints, contact Mike Hinton 



30 



VIRGINIA WILDLIFE ♦ www.HuntFishVA.com 




ri^l J f hat we've got here is...fail- 

|r Ir ure to commumcate/' is one 
of the most vivid lines from one of my 
all-time favorite classic movies. The 
title of the movie alone — Cool Hand 
Luke — should tell you why it is a 
classic. From watching that movie 
and observing you, it seems that hu- 
mans, in general, have trouble com- 
municating with one another. Your 
use of verbal communication some- 
times becomes louder and louder 
when you get excited or irritated. Ob- 
serving humans is probably how we 
dogs learned to bark. 

Communication from one dog to 
another is often visual. Dogs are 
adept at reading body language — 
both yours and other dogs. We look 
at the way another dog is standing or 
lays down when another dog ap- 
proaches, the way it wags its tail, the 
way its head or ears are cocked, or the 
way the hair may rise up on its back. 
A dog's body language tells us 
whether we might enjoy that dog's 
company or should give him some 
space. A dog that can read another 
dog's body language correctly gener- 
ally knows how to act. A dog or 
human that cannot read body lan- 
guage or just ignores what it is reading 
will often find itself in some degree of 
difficulty. 

All of this became very evident to 
me the other day when Ol' Jones was 
communicating with the alpha fe- 
male around here. He was having 
one of those uncomfortable moments 



which begin when the alpha female 
starts a conversation with the four 
words every human male dreads 
hearing from the human female: "We 
need to talk. " Human males hate these 
words because they know tliey will 
be squirming more than a dog at a 
flea circus before the female has had 
her say. The scquirming comes from 
the agonizing length of time males 
have to pretend they are interested in 
what is being said, while still trying 
to stay awake. Falling asleep during a 
communication period with the fe- 
male is a very bad thing for the male. 
But keeping awake is hard for the 
male, because he knows the commu- 
nication period will end with him 
saying his four words: "/ am really 
sorry." For a male, if he already 
knows how the conversation is going 
to end, it is really hard for him to lis- 
ten to the rest of the story. 

Now the human male and the 
dog kinda understand each other 
after they have spent just a little time 
together. We both just want the 
facts — plain and simple. No need for 
a great deal of detail when telling a 
story. Use as few words as possible to 
convey the point. Ol' Jones can issue 
a few grunts and give a hand gesture, 
and I pretty much have it figured out 
what he wants or expects me to do. 

A prime example of this is when 
or Jones thought it would be a good 
idea if he took the alpha female hunt- 
ing with us. We had not had much 
luck the day we went out, but we did 



not want to leave empt\'-handed be- 
cause we both had been sorta brag- 
ging to the female what a good 
hunting team we were. Ol' Jones 
spotted a promising bit of cover 
where he thought there might be a 
pheasant. He grunted, then pointed 
to the way he wanted me to go. 

For some reason the alpha fe- 
male, who had been patiently follow- 
ing us around all day, wanted me to 
go to a particular spot in the opposite 
direction. Instead of grunting, she 
pointed to a particular shrub and 
gave the Latin name for it. She then 
remarked about the color of the 
leaves and reflected on how the 
palette of the sky in the background, 
combined with said leaves, remind- 
ed her of the colors she saw in an Ital- 
ian chapel in some remote place in 
Tuscany on the third of June about six 
years ago. She believed it was raining 
that day. She went on about the 
woodwork of the chapel doors and 
the rich texture of the 500-year-old 
tapestry inside. By the time she had 
given me the information she 
thought I needed, I could not remem- 
ber if I was her hunting parhier or her 
interior decorator! 

I could read Ol' Jones's body lan- 
guage and he was coming to a slow 
boil. The uncanny thing was tliat my 
nose was agreeing with the lady, aind 
so I headed where she sent me. Up 
popped a rooster, which Mrs. Ol' 
Jones dropped as pretty as you please 
with her 20 gauge! 

The communication part of the 
day pretty much ended right then for 
everyone. The only words I remem- 
ber hearing after that were when Ol' 
Jones was putting me back in my 
crate. He bent over and looked at me 
kind of odd-like and whispered, "We 
need to talk! " 

Keep a leg up, Luke 



Luke is a black Labrador retritver who speiids his 
spare tune huutuig up good stories with his best 
fiieiut, Clarke C. ]ones. You can contact Luke 
and Clarke at www.ctarkecjones.coni. 



SEPTEMBER 2010 



by Lynda Richardson 



The Theater of Color 



rhe stage is set. The curtains rise 
and the light comes up to reveal a 
brilliantly colored scene. Your eyes 
are first drawn to the loud and fiery 
reds, only to move around the stage 
to follow the cheerful yellows and ju- 
bilant oranges. Then, you look closer 
to see cool blue resting calmly in the 
background while comforting green 
lounges in front, not vying for any- 
one's attention. Almost unnoticed, 
gray and brown appear here and 
there, making everyone else look 
bright and colorful in comparison. 

Life is a stage, and in photogra- 
phy color plays an important role. 
Red is the "star of the show," scream- 
ing loudly to capture your gaze. Yel- 
low cind orange vie for star attention 
but always bow to red in every scene. 
As for supporting roles, these are 
played by calm and unassuming 
greens and blues as well as neutral 
colors like gray and brown. These 
supporting colors have the job of 
making the "stars" look good. 

Just like a painter, a photographer 
must be aware of how colors work to- 
gether or against one another. Strong 
reds, yellows, and oranges will al- 
ways be noticed first in a photo- 
graph — even if they are in the back- 
ground. If you photograph a subtlely 
colored subject, don't include a bright 
color in the background that will dis- 
tract the viewer! The job of greens and 
blues is to push bright colors forward 
in a scene, making them stand out 
even more. Nothing will make a red 
cardinal pop out of a photograph 
more than a rich blue sky or lush 
green foliage. 

Certain colors work together well 
and have great "chemistry." Purple 
and yellow would be examples of 
complementary colors. Orange and 
green are opposite colors, creating 
tension between one another. Some- 
times this can create interest, but at 
other times it could ruin the plot! 




The complementary yellow and violet col- 
ors are found opposite one another on the 
color wheel. These colors tend to accentu- 
ate and bring out the best in each other. 
© Lynda Richardson 



For more information on color, I 
recommend spending some time 
with an artist's color wheel. Colors 
are presented in a circle to reveal how 
they relate to one another. You can 
find information about color wheels 
on the internet, at an art store, or at 
your local library or bookstore. 

In your next photographic en- 
deavor, consider what role color will 
play in your images. Be selective 
when you cast a shot and don't let 
some of the stars take advantage of 
your vision! Hopefully, you will have 
a Tony Award-winning production. 
Good Luck and Happy Shooting! D 

You are invited to submit one to five of your best 
photographs to "Innage of the Month," Virginia 
Wildlife Magazine, P.O. Box 11104, 4010 West 
Broad Street, Richmond, VA 23230-1104. Send 
original slides, super high-quality prints, or high- 
res jpeg, tiff, or raw files on a disk and include a 
self-addressed, stamped envelope or other ship- 
ping method for return. Also, please include any 
pertinent information regarding how and where 
you captured the image and what camera and 
settings you used, along with your phone num- 
ber. We look forward to seeing and sharing your 
work with our readers. 



MmmaifiimimiM 




Congratulations go to Jeff Turner ofSedleyfor his portrait of a neutral colored northern 
water snake photographed on the Nottoway River. Jeff is the Blackwater Nottoway River- 
keeper and was the first to submit to us a still image shot with a digital camcorder. 
Panasonic PV-GS320 digital camcorder, no ISO recorded, l/500th, f/2.8. 



32 



VIRGINIA WILDLIFE ♦ www.HuntFishVA.com 




by Tom Guess 



Boaters Speak a Different Language 



A f autical terms have always in- 
I V trigued me. Have you ever no- 
ticed that boaters speak a different 
language from everyone else? For 
example: "I shoved off in my dory 
dead reckoning around the double; 
then came a squall hard off my beam 
that caused me lots of trouble." 
What I really said is, "I shoved ojfigot 
underway) in my don/ (a general 
purpose boat or sailing boat for 
pulling) to dead reckon (navigate by 
course, speed, and drift estimates) 
around a double (peninsula or point 
of land); then came a squall (short, 
sudden violent wind with rain or 
snow) hard off my beam (the widest 
part of the boat, often center) that 
caused me lots of trouble. I know 
most of us don't speak like this 
today, but many of the nautical 
terms that we routinely use have a 
long history, and I thought it would 
be fun to share them with you with 
the help of John G. Rogers (1985). 

Bow: The forward end or front of 
any craft. 

Cut and Run: Originally meant to 
cut the anchor cable, or to cut the 
gaskets to make sail, to get under 
way in a hurry. 

Deadwood: The extension of the 
hull underwater, where it is shaped 
into the rudder post. 

Dungarees: The modern sailors' 
work clothes. The term is not mod- 
ern. It is from the 18th century and 
comes from the Hindi word dungri, 
for a type of Indian cotton cloth. 

Ebb: Outgoing tidal flow. 

Eddy: A circular or reverse flow, 
backwards. 




Freeboard: The height of a craft's 
side above the waterline. 

Gear: An all-encompassing word 
for a ship's or sailor's equipment. 

Ground: The bottom. As to run 
aground or grounci your vessel. 

The Head: Earlier, the crew's la- 
trine; now, generally all the ship- 
board "facilities." 

Helm: The simplest definition is 
"tiller," but the term could be said to 
refer to the steering apparatus of any 
craft. 

Holiday: A gap in one's shipboard 
work, as an unscrubbed or unpaint- 
ed area. 

Hull: Thebody of any craft. 

Inboard: Said of anything inside the 
hull, outer rails, or outer rigging of a 
vessel. 

Jolly Roger: The traditional decora- 
tive and identifying flag of pirates 
and buccaneers; usually black, with 
a design of macabre nature such as 
the well-known skull-and-crossed- 
bones. 



Keel: The "backbone" of a boat or 
ship; also on sailing craft the project- 
ing structure extending below the 
bottom, for ballast and directional 
control. 

Landfall: The sighting of land from 
sea (sometimes a very happy event). 

Landlubber: A shore-sider, especial- 
ly one who knows little about the 
water. 

Leeward: In a position or direction 
away from that of the wind. 

Port: A harbor city or town. The left 
side of a craft or boat when facing 
forward. 

Starboard: The right side of a craft 
or boat when facing forward. 

I hope you have enjoyed this, and re- 
member, until next time: Be Respon- 
sible, Be Safe, and Have Fun! H 

Tom Guess, U. S. Const Guard (Ret.), serves as 
a statewide coordinator for the Boating Safety 
Education Program at tlie DGIF. 



Source: 

Rogers, J. G., 1985. Origins of Sea Terms, 

Mystic Seaport Museum, Inc., Mystic, C\. 



SEPTEMBER 2010 



33 




^ 





by Ken and Maria Perrotte 



Stovetop Goose with Raspberry Sauce 



1 J / aterfowl enthusiasts are fortunate when it comes 
WW to geese. Virginia is a major destination for mi- 
grating birds in the winter, and there are still many resi- 
dent geese that call farms, golf courses, shopping malls, 
parks, and more their home. 

Hunter bag limits on these resident geese are espe- 
cially generous during the early seasons before migrato- 
ry birds arrive. These birds are well-fed, fat, and tasty. 

You can roast goose whole, but many hunters breast 
out their birds. Here's a recipe for cooking those breasts 
on the stovetop and finishing them with a couple of 
sauces that complement the rich flavor of the meat. 

Ingredients (Serves 2) 

1 Goose breast, skinless and sliced about 
Vi inch thick 
Meat tenderizer 
Salt and pepper 
tablespoons butter 
cup beef broth 
cup dry red wine 
tablespoon chopped shallots 
teaspoon chopped chives 
2- to 3-inch sprigs of fresh rosemary 
teaspoon herbs de Provence (if not available, use 
Yi teaspoon dried thyme and |4 teaspoon each of 
marjoram, basil, and sage and add an extra sprig 
of rosemary) 
cup raspberry jam 
cup fresh or frozen raspberries 
teaspoon cornstarch 



2 

1 

2 
1 



V3 



1 



Pierce the meat with a fork and season the goose lightly 
with meat tenderizer and pepper. Let it rest for 30 min- 
utes. Heat bvitter over medium-high heat and saute 
goose until brown on both sides, but still rare in the mid- 
dle. Do not cook the meat past rare at this point. Repeat: 
Do not overcook! As restaurant chefs have admonished 
in the past, "We're not responsible for meat cooked well 
done." When it comes to cooking goose breasts, well 
done can easily equate to tenderized boot leather. 



The goal is to have the meat reach a nice warm cen- 
ter, pink middle, or medium, when finished. 

Remove goose from pan and add broth, wine, 
shallots, chives, spices, and seasonings. Simmer un- 
covered until reduced in half (about 10 min.). Add jam 
and cook another 5 minutes. Remove rosemary. In a 
separate cup, slowly add a teaspoon of cold water to 
cornstarch, stirring to prevent lumps. Then, stir this 
mixture into sauce to thicken. Add berries and adjust 
with more salt and pepper to taste. 

Add the goose and any accumulated juices, and 
heat until meat is warmed. 

Blackberry Sauce Option 

If raspberries aren't available or you think you may 
prefer blackberries, a sauce of blackberry and pepper- 
corn is also delicious with goose. 

If choosing this option, liberally season the meat 
with fresh cracked pepper before sauteing. Follow the 
recipe directions, but substitute blackberries and 
blackberry jam. For the spices and seasonings, use one 
sprig of rosemary and one teaspoon whole pepper- 
corns, but then remove the peppercorns prior to 
adding the fruit as the finishing step. If you don't, well, 
you'll understand when you crunch down on one. 

Serving 

Polenta can be made ahead of time, following direc- 
tions on the package. Grits can be substituted if polen- 
ta is not available. Serve the goose over polenta and 
drizzle with sauce. 

Sauteed green beans make a nice side dish. Simply 
cook fresh or frozen green beans in olive oil and a little 
fresh chopped garlic. Add slivered almonds or mush- 
rooms if desired. 

The raspberry sauce version does well with a mer- 
lot wine pairing, while for the more peppery blackber- 
ry edition, a gutsy cabernet sauvignon, old vine zin- 
fandel, or other serious red wine can be a wonderful 
match, n 



34 



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Photo Contest Reminder 

The deadline for submitting photographs for 

the 2010 Virginia Wildlife Photography Contest 

is November 2, 2010. 

Winning photographs will appear in the 

special March 2011 issue of the magazine. For 
: more information about the contest and to view 
Jastyear's edition online, visit the Department's 
^website at: http://www.dgif.virginia.gov/ 
Lphotocontest. 








The apprentice hunting license serves as a first- 
time Virginia resident or nonresident hunting li- 
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The license holder must be accompanied and 
directly supervised by a mentor over 1 8 who 
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The apprentice license does not qualify the 
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Department regulations. A hunter education 
course must be successfully completed to ob- 
tain a regular hunting license. 

A bear, deer, turkey license and all applicable 
stamps or permits are required in addition to 
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Previous Virginia resident and nonresident 
hunting license holders may not use an appren- 
tice license. 

To learn more about the Virginia Apprentice 
Hunting License, call (866) 721-691 1 or log on 
to wv^w.HuntFishVA.com. 



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calendar— a thoughtful gift that's still a bargain at 
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As always, the calendar 
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